So far, conventional analog mammography and digital full-field mammography was only able to display the three-dimensional anatomical structure of the breast on a two-dimensional level. This made diagnosis more difficult and limited the possibility of the physician identifying certain types of tumor; since, anatomical structures could overlap and obscure lesions. The 3D tomosynthesis technology in the Mammomat Inspiration overcomes these limitations: The technology acquires several projections of the breast from different angles using a fast detector based on amorphous Selenium (aSe) and uses this raw data to generate a 3D volume set. This enables a better analysis of the type and size of lesions as well as microcalcifications compared to conventional methods. Tomosynthesis increases the sensitivity and specificity of mammography, as well as improving tumor differentiation and classification.
Tomosynthesis differs from conventional mammography in the same way that, for example, a CT scan differs from a classical X-ray image. During the examination, the X-ray tube moves in a 50-degree arc around the breast, taking 25 low-dose images. The images are then used as raw data to construct high-resolution 3D images. High spatial resolution and a wide acquisition angle result in the production of mammography images with unparalleled image quality.
The Mammomat Inspiration mammography system from Siemens now features the company’s 3D tomosynthesis imaging that delivers high quality volumetric views of the breast. With the help of this digital reconstruction technology, clinicians should now avoid false positives by evaluating a suspected tumor from different angles.
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